How To Open Saved Outlook Files

Dear Computer Lady,

After backing up all the information that I had on an old computer to my recently purchased new computer, I am unable to open some saved Outlook 2010 files.

They transferred over from my old computer into my “Documents” folder on my new computer and after getting the message that I had to move them to my new Outlook 2010 file, I did, but still they would not open and just recently that file shows that it is empty. But I do see the following files in my Documents folder = Archive.pst; My Outlook Data File (1).pst; and Outlook.pst.

How can I open these to retrieve the saved information?

Your help is appreciated, Penny

Dear Penny,

The best way to retrieve the messages in those files is to open Outlook first, then use the “Import” function to import the messages, contacts and settings into Outlook.

I don’t have Outlook 2010 on my computer so I can’t give you step by step directions, but usually the import function is either in the “File” menu or the “Tools” menu.

If you live in the area, I would be happy to set Outlook back up for you, transferring emails from old to new computers is one of the things I frequently do for my customers.



It’s Your Turn: What do you think?
…. Share your experience in the comments box below.

Elizabeth Boston is a Web designer, Social Media Consultant and managing editor of, “Ask The Computer Lady”.
Connect with


Previous Post

Incoming Email Font Too Small

Next Post

How To Extend The Life of my Vista Laptop


    • anetherton
    • October 18, 2016

    Hi Elizabeth;
    I discovered by piddling around in Thunderbird that the way to increase font size is like so:

    click on the three lines on the upper right of the screen (called the “hamburger” by some) -> go to “options” –> from the dropdown, pick “options” –> then pick “display”, and choose “formatting”. There you can change the default font and the size.

    I hope this was helpful to someone.

    I really appreciate what you do for your readers, along with a busy business!


    • Rhino
    • October 18, 2016

    Instructions below. If not clear enough go to the following webpage at Microsoft and go down until you see the Outlook 2010 line, click it and it will expand and have instructions and pictures:

    To import into Outlook 2010 do the following:

    At the top of your Outlook ribbon, choose the File tab.

    Choose Open > Import. This starts the wizard.

    In the Import and Export Wizard, click Import from another program or file, and the click Next.

    Select Outlook Data File (.pst), and then click Next.

    Choose Browse, then choose the .pst file you want to import, and choose Next.

    NOTES: Under Options, if you want the imported information to replace duplicate items already in Outlook, choose that. Otherwise, choose Do not import duplicates.

    If a password was assigned to the Outlook Data File (.pst), you are prompted to enter the password, and then click OK.

    Set the options for importing items. Choose Filter if you want to only import certain emails. Choose the More Choices tab if you want to only import emails that are read or unread.

    The default settings usually don’t need to be changed. The top folder — usually Personal Folders, Outlook Data File, or your email address — is selected automatically.

    Choose Filter if you want to import only certain emails.

    Include subfolders is selected by default. All folders under the folder selected will be imported.

    Select one of the destination options:

    Import items into the current folder – this imports the data into the folder currently selected.

    Import items into the same folder in – this imports the data into the destination folder of the same name as the source folder, e.g., from Inbox to Inbox. If a folder doesn’t exist in Outlook, it will be created.

    Choose Finish. Outlook starts importing your data immediately. You’ll know it’s finished when the progress box closes.

Leave a Reply